The Bridge Series: Contracts
Tuesday April 19, 2016
Copyright, royalties, fees, recognition, editorial control: Are literary translators getting better contracts than they used to? What are the “best practices”? What influence do authors’ agents have on translators’ contracts? How can translators get help negotiating a contract? Translator Shelley Frisch, publisher Juliet Grames (Soho Press), and agent Jacqueline Ko (The Wylie Agency) joined translator Alex Zucker for a discussion of literary translation contracts.
Shelley Frisch’s translations from the German include biographies of Nietzsche, Einstein, Leonardo da Vinci, and Kafka, for which she was awarded a Modern Language Association Translation Prize and the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translator’s Prize. Her latest, a dual biography of Marlene Dietrich and Leni Riefenstahl, was named a finalist for the NBCC Awards.
Juliet Grames is Associate Publisher at Soho Press, where she also acquires and edits literary fiction and the Soho Crime international crime fiction imprint.
Jacqueline Ko is an agent at the Wylie Agency, representing literary fiction and nonfiction, including work in translation. The Wylie Agency has offices in New York and London, and represents more than 900 clients internationally.
Alex Zucker, cochair of the PEN America Translation Committee, has three translations of Czech authors out in 2016: Tomáš Zmeškal’s Love Letter in Cuneiform (Margellos World Republic of Letters), Josef Jedlička’s Midway Upon the Journey of Our Life (Karolinum Press), and Magdaléna Platzová’s The Attempt (Bellevue Literary Press).